The five-door liftback-style saloon, known internally as Project Trinity, is planned to take the ID 4 name in 2026, setting up a naming policy that will see future Volkswagen models grouped together under individual model lines dependent on size.
The ID 4 saloon will join a facelifted version of the current ID 4 SUV in an expanded mid-range line-up that has been conceived to provide competition to the Model 3 and its sister model, the Tesla Model Y.
Volkswagen’s new electric saloon will offer the choice of either single-motor rear-wheel-drive or dual-motor four-wheel-drive options and, from the beginning of sales, standard 5G over-the-air software upgrades and level-two autonomous driving functionality.
Volkswagen originally suggested the ID 4 saloon would feature level-four autonomous driving functionality. However, it now says it will be technically capable of supporting it, if and when it is made available to customers.
Under the New Auto strategy announced last year, Volkswagen has switched its focus to the electrification of its model range, with the goal of increasing the electric model share of its global sales to 25% in 2025. In 2021, the figure was 6%.
Further into the future, VW anticipates that electric models will take at least a 50% share of global sales by 2030 and an almost 100% share in all major markets by 2040.
The ID 4 saloon is the first Volkswagen to be conceived under a new product development process that is aimed at significantly shortening the overall development time of its future models.
“We’re reducing development time by 25%,” said Thomas Ulbrich, Volkswagen’s head of research and development. “Projects will be completed in 40 months instead of the 54 months we have today.”